Essay Contest

Essay Contest2021-11-10T15:32:59+00:00
Lasker Essay Contest

The 2022 Essay Contest will open on the 9th of February 2022.

About the Contest

The Lasker Essay Contest engages young scientists and clinicians from the US and around the globe in a discussion about big questions in biology and medicine and the role of biomedical research in our society today. The Contest aims to build skills in communicating important medical and scientific issues to broad audiences. The topic is announced annually in early February and winners are announced in early July.


The Contest is open to medical school students, interns, residents, and fellows; doctoral students and postdoctoral fellows in biomedical sciences; and graduate students in public health or other health professions programs. Applicants (from the US or any other countries) must be currently participating in an educational program. This program may be located in any country.


Winners will receive up to $5,000. Monetary prizes will be directed to the winner’s university to be used towards the winner’s educational expenses.


Essays should be of 800 words or less and must be written in English. The file containing the essay should include the essay title and the applicant’s name, email, and institutional affiliation. References are not counted towards the 800 word limit. Field-specific scientific jargon should be avoided or explained.

Evaluation Criteria

Essays will be evaluated based on their quality of writing, style, and clarity. Essays that are not written in English or are longer than 800 words will not be considered.

All Winners

Read the Winning Essays


Emily Ashkin
Michael Bishop: A Scientist for the Next Generation

David Basta
For the Love of Science

Avash Das:
Michael Brown and Joseph Goldstein: Tribute to My Inspiration

William Dunn
Sweet Are the Uses of Adversity

Safwan Elkhatib
Salk, Sabin, and the Crown of Health

Laurel Gabler
Putting “People’s Health in People’s Hands”: How the Bangs Inspired my Personal Journey

Kwabena Kusi-Mensah
As One Single Tribe: Thinking Globally and Locally

Lisa Learman
With the Corn, Against the Grain

Olivia Lucero
Genetics as a Tool for Generational Empowerment

Hannah Mason
My Gym Genie: Gathering Inspiration from Dr. John Schiller

Samantha Wong
Fauci: Science as a Voice of Reason


Grace Beggs
Game On: Smartphone Technology for Science Education

Peter John
Making it All Fun and Games in the Biomedical Sciences

Dereck Paul
Pathways: A National Mentorship Program for High School Students Underrepresented in Science and Medicine


David Hartmann
Cancer Survivors: Outstanding Advocates for Trust in Science

Debra Karhson
A Verification Vaccine for Social Contagion

Caroline Vissers
Diversity at the Top of the Social Media Signaling Cascade


Abigail Cline
Science and Cinema: From the Benchtop to the Big Screen

Tammy Tran
Science Is Everywhere: Unexpected Science Encounters in the Course of Everyday Life

Michael Wu
Search for Science: Smart Search-Linked Discussion Forums

Jennifer Bratburd
Breaking through Barriers to Science with Citizen Science

Apurva Lunia
Dissemination of Biomedical Research Via Multimedia Platforms Using Existing Healthcare Frameworks

Jessica Sagers
Let’s Get Real: (Re)making Scientists Into People


David Ottenheimer
Modern Neuroscience Has the Tools to Treat Psychiatric Illness

Therese Woodring (Korndorf)
Hacking the Bacterial Social Network: Quorum Sensing and the Future of Microbial Management

Unikora Yang
The Cutting Edge of DNA Editing: Translating CRISPR to Improve Human health


David Hill
Mutual Understanding: Uncovering the Mechanistic Basis of the Host-Symbiont Relationship in Human Health

Joseph Rathkey
In Silico Modeling as an Ideal Platform for Future Biological Research and Discovery

Stephanie Ng
Depression and the Final Frontier

Omar Toubat
Mastering the Genetic Reprogramming of Cells


Peter Soh
Offering Incentives for Future Scientists

Michael Burel
Catalyzing Broad Public Interest in Scientific Research

Nick Andresen
Crowdsourcing a Medical Research Donation Database

Gregg Gonsalves
Researchers as Advocates and Activists

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